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Why Anzac?


On many ANZAC days I was asked to go to Thornton School to give a short talk to the children. The following is one of my talks.


On the 25th of April the Australian and New Zealand nations will once again gather to commemorate the Anzacs of Gallipoli.

The supreme sacrifice made by our war dead will be remembered by parades, services and reunions throughout the land. Through the determination and gallantry of all these men Australia emerged after WWI as an internationally recognized and respected nation.

At the outbreak of war in 1914 Australia was a dominion of the British Empire and was automatically involved. To Brigadier Bridge fell the task of producing an A.M.F. for service abroad. By the 8th of August 1914 he had developed a scheme and by proclamation recruiting began 2 days later. Brig. Bridge personally devised the name Australian Imperial Forces, with an eye to the initials A.I.F. which he knew would be used as its name.

The term ANZAC came into official use in January 1915, approved by General Sir W.R. Birdwood.

At Gallipoli the Australian and New Zealand Forces became known as Anzacs. In 1921 the word Anzac became protected by law from commercial use and laws were passed by New Zealand and Great Britain.

Anzac has a far deeper meaning to Australia and its history for it personified comradeship, determination, endurance and courage displayed on Gallipoli Peninsular so many years ago.

The attributes were synonymous with deeds of valour in WWI, WWII, Korea and Vietnam.

It is a personal and national responsibility that we pay tribute on Anzac Day.

They showed us the way. We should remember them.



ABOVE: The Ramleh War
Cemetery in 1936


UPDATED: 25 December 2013 2013